5280 Naturals

All Natural, Organic, Handcrafted Bath and Beauty Products
Fresh, Handmade, Vegan, Cruelty-Free, Chemical Free, Ethical Purchasing

The Ingredients We Avoid

"It's a well-known fact that 60% of what we put on our skin is absorbed into our body"
Debbie Bilezikian, All Natural Beauty.

"In the U.S., approximately 20% of cosmetics and personal care products contain a formaldehyde-releaser and the frequency of contact allergy to these ingredients is much higher among Americans compared to studies in Europe."
Source: EWG

Alcohol denat (denatured alcohol)

A petrochemical byproduct. Usually contains benzyl alcohol, making it undrinkable. Can cause systemic eczematous, contact dermatitis and chemical sensitivities. Used in all commercial perfumes as solvent. 


A common ingredient in antiperspirant sticks and some makeup. Skin irritant, linked to Alzheimer's and lung disease. 

Benzyl alcohol

A preservative derived from petroleum. Harmful if swallowed, inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Severe irritant for eyes, skin and respiratory system.  

Bismuth Oxychloride

Bismuth is put in cosmetics because it gives a sheen to the face, is soft to the touch, and is extremely inexpensive. A byproduct of lead and copper refining, bismuth oxychloride is a heavy metal. Heavy metals have been linked to Alzheimer's and Parkinson's Disease. Many people demonstrate acute sensitivity to this substance and suffer from rashes and bad irritations. Often found in "pure" mineral makeup.


Encourages the breakdown of vitamin D, can cause lipid and cholesterol levels to increase. Linked to cancer and endocrine disruption.


Emulsifier used in regular creams and lotions. Highly irritating and already banned in Canada as a cosmetic ingredient.

Coal Tar

Coal tars are used in many over-the-counter shampoos, soaps, and ointments, especially for psoriasis, dandruff, etc.  Coal tar contains approximately 10,000 chemicals, of which only about 50% have been identified and the composition of coal tar varies with its origin and type.


Currently, no scientific evidence suggests that the coal tar in the concentrations seen in non-prescription treatments is (or is not) carcinogenic because there are too few studies and insufficient data to make a judgment.


The residue from the distillation of high-temperature coal tar was listed on 28 October 2008 as a substance of very high concern by the European Chemicals Agency.


Cocamide DEA and lauramide DEA

DEA is used as a skin softener and humectant in personal care products. It can be carcinogenic when combined with other ingredients. It's a skin irritant. Similarly DEA, TEA and MEA share the same hazardous characteristics.


Chemical compounds made as reaction products involving ethylene oxide. Ethoxylated materials include ingredients such as Laureth, Myreth, Ceteth, Ceteareth, Glycereth, etc. Trace contaminants in some ethoxylates have been implicated as potent carcinogens. 


A preservative which includes Imidazolidinyl Urea, Diazolidinyl Urea, DMDM Hydantoin and Sodium Hydroxymethylglycinate. A known irritant and carcinogen. It is often hidden in other ingredients. Formaldehyde releasing preservatives are very common in skin care products.


Used as solvents for preservatives, fragrance, and other substances. Also is referred to as humectant, emollient and preservative. Glycols are irritating and harmful to the skin. The worse offender in this group is Propylene Glycol.  You'll find many products that say they don't use propylene glycol, but if you examine the ingredient list you may find Butylene, Pentylene, Hexylene, or Caprylyl Glycols, Capryl Cglycol, Caprylic Glycol.

Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE)

A "natural" preservative used in "natural" skincare. For a long time it was believed to be the only one truly natural preservative on the market. Independent analysis showed that most commercially produced GSE used in skincare preservation was contaminated with parabens which lend the preserving qualities to this ingredient. 

Isopropyl Alcohol Isopropyl Alcohol, which can affect you when inhaled and by passing through the skin, is used in making cosmetics, skin and hair products, perfumes, pharmaceuticals, dyes, cleaners, antifreezes and other chemicals. Contact can irritate and burn the skin and eyes. Prolonged or repeated contact can cause a skin rash, itching, dryness and redness. Inhaling Isopropyl Alcohol can irritate the nose and throat.  Repeated high exposure can cause headache, dizziness, confusion, loss of coordination, unconsciousness and even death. Isopropyl Alcohol may affect the liver and kidneys.  Yet, many of the products we use every day contain Isopropyl Alcohol!

Japanese Honeysuckle

Used as a new "natural" preservative in "natural" skincare products, but it contains parabens. Many companies that use Japanese Honeysuckle extract label their products as "paraben free" or "preservative free" which in our opinion is misleading. However natural this ingredient sounds, information available to the public about it is very limited and lacks transparency.


Phthalates are synthetic chemical compounds mainly used as softening agents and to create fragrance. Possible carcinogen.  Phthalates are allergens and hormone disruptors.


Parabens are synthetic compounds used as a preservative in a vast majority of cosmetic products, including skincare, makeup and even makeup tools (for example, pressed or loose powder puffs). Include methylparabens, propylparabens, butylparabens, and ethylparabens. Parabens cause allergic reactions and skin irritation. They are known estrogen mimickers and may cause hormonal misbalance.


Derived from non-renewable raw materials, such as oil or natural gas. These include acrylamides, ethoxylates, mineral oil, polyethylene glycol (See PEG below) and propylene glycol.  Will often see this as PEG-20, PEG-80, etc.

PEG (Polyethylene Glycol)

Emulsifier and plasticizer. Contains carcinogenic impurities. 

or petroleum jelly


Highly occlusive, clogs pores and causes acne, a suspected carcinogen.  Petroleum by-products can pass through the brain barrier and cause ADD/dyslexia symptoms. 


A synthetic ether alcohol preservative. Causes contact dermatitis. 


A synthetic emollient which provides glide to the formula. Cyclomethicone, Cyclopentasiloxane, Dimethicone, Methicone, and Phenyl Trimethicone can be harmful or irritating to the skin. Widely used in skin care and hair care preparations.

SLS (Sodium Laurel/Laureth Sulfate)

Widely used in soaps (including soap bars), shampoos, toothpastes and cleansers for easy foaming and other properties. A harsh detergent which dries out skin and hair and is a known skin irritant. Responsible for more frequent occurrences of recurrent aphthous ulcers in prone individuals.  (I'm one of them!)

Synthetic Dyes

Synthetic dyes are byproducts of the petroleum industry. The molecular structure of these products are so small that they can pass through the brain barrier. This can manifest itself as turning numbers backwards when writing or reading, peeling skin, acne, or ADD symptoms. Many people have allergies to artificial colorings.


Talc has asbestos in it. Asbestos is a very powerful and dangerous carcinogen, linked to ovarian cancer and is a suspected respiratory toxin. Most often used in baby powders, foundation and even some skincare.

TEA (Triethanolamine)

Contains ammonium salts. It is a toxic eye irritant and sensitizer. 

Tetrasodium EDTA

Widely used in liquid and hard soap, cleansers, shampoos, creams, lotions and other preparations. Helps easily produce rich lather and is used in skincare as emollient and preservative. A known skin irritant.


Was first used as a pesticide.  It's a high production volume ingredient used as a bactericide in personal care products, toothpaste, antibacterial soap and clothing, has been linked to heart disease and heart failure in a new study. Triclosan also interferes with muscle function and may alter hormone regulation.